CBS has given a pilot order to Scorpion, a drama from Nick Santora, Justin Lin, Alex Kurtzman and Bob Orci. The project, which had a put pilot commitment, was written by Breakout Kings co-creator Santora and will be directed by Fast & Furious’ Lin, with CBS TV Studios producing. It centers on an eccentric genius and his international network of super-geniuses who form the last line of defense against the complex threats of the modern age.
The CW brass appear focused on finding an Army drama to add to its lineup. Following last year’s pilot Company Town, the network is staying in the military arena with Boots (working title), a new hourlong project from Breakout Kings co-creator/executive producer Nick Santora and Gary Fleder. Written by Santora and directed by Fleder, Boots is a serialized drama that follows young men and women from all over the country as they are thrown into the gauntlet that is the U.S. Marine Corps Boot Camp on Parris Island, SC. As they inevitably collide with each other, their instructors and local townies, these recruits must overcome their pasts and in doing so build their futures. CBS TV Studios, where Santora is under an overall deal, produces, with Santora and Fleder exec producing. This marks Santora’s second sale, along with a drama at CBS, which has a put pilot commitment with Justin Lin directing and exec producing and Alex Kurtzman and Roberto Orci exec producing. Fleder has a strong track record at the CW where all three pilots he has directed, Life Unexpected, Beauty And The Beast and last season’s Oxygen (now Star-Crossed), have gone to series. Santora is with WME and Gotham, Fleder with WME.
EXCLUSIVE: Breakout Kings co-creator Nick Santora has signed a two-year overall deal with CBS TV Studios. Under the pact, he will join the studio’s new CBS drama series Vegas starring Dennis Quaid and Michael Chiklis as co-executive producer and will develop new projects. The deal reunites Santora with CBS Studios president David Stapf. As a writer-producer on the CBS drama The Guardian Santora worked with Stapf, then head of current programming at CBS.
Santora did stints on The Guardian, The Sopranos and Law & Order before joining Fox’s Prison Break right after the pilot. He worked on the Fox drama for its entire four-year run, rising to co-executive producer and landing an overall deal with the series’ producer, 20th Century Fox TV. Santora and Prison Break executive producer Matt Olmstead went on to create Breakout Kings, originally for Fox. The project migrated to A&E where it was picked up to series and ran for two years via 20th TV’s Fox21 until the network’s decision yesterday not to proceed with Season 3. Both Santora and Olmstead have already lined up their next gigs — Santora is off to CBS Studios and Vegas, Olmstead recently signed on as showrunner on the new NBC/Dick Wolf drama series Chicago Fire.
In a competitive situation, Fox has bought The Raiding Party, a drama project from Breakout Kings creator Nick Santora. The project hails from DreamWorks TV, Sony Pictures TV and Santora’s Blackjack Films banner and stems from the premium blind script deal Santora had at Sony. The Raiding Party centers on three brothers, overseen by their dominant mother, who carry on the successful family business that was founded by their grandfather and bequeathed to them by their dad … and that business happens to be robbing banks. This marks Santora’s return to Fox, where Breakout Kings was originally developed and picked up to pilot. Additionally, Santora, repped by WME and the Gotham Group, worked on the network’s Prison Break for the drama’s four-season run. He also created and executive produced the CW reality series Beauty and the Geek. DreamWorks has 5 series on the air, all large-scale, big-budget productions: The Borgias on Showtime, Falling Skies on TNT, and the upcoming Terra Nova on Fox, Smash on NBC and The River on ABC.
At TCA this morning, AMC and A&E announced premiere dates for their upcoming new original scripted series.
AMC’s The Killing, a crime thriller from writer/executive producer/showrunner Veena Sud, which is based on the successful Danish series Forbrydelsen, will debut on April 3 in the Sunday 10 PM time slot. Mireille Enos (Big Love) is stars in the series from Fox TV Studios. AMC also announced that production on the delayed Season 4 of Breaking Bad will begin next Thursday.
A&E’s Breakout Kings will make its debut in the same Sunday 10 PM but a couple of weeks earlier, on March 13. The series, from Prison Break‘s Matt Olmstead and Nick Santora and Chernin Entertainment/Fox21, is an action ensemble drama about the partnership between the U.S. Marshals’ office and a group of convicts. The project, originally developed for Fox, landed at A&E after Fox passed on the pilot.
Below is the first teaser for the new A&E drama series Breakout Kings, premiering during the season finale of The Glades this Sunday. Breakout Kings was passed over by fox and then beat the odds and found a second life on A&E, which picked it up with a 13-episode order. The show about a team of U.S. marshals and a group of convicts who race against the clock to apprehend escaped prisoners, was created by Prison Break alums Matt Olmstead and Nick Santora, a connection that is played up in the promo. Laz Alonso, Domenick Lombardozzi, Malcolm Goodwin, Jimmi Simpson, Serinda Swan and Brooke Nevin star; Fox21 and Chernin Entertainment produce.